Call for Participation

June 23, 2019 in San Diego, CA

We invite submissions from researchers, game designers, players, and others to participate in a one-day workshop on Distributed Creativity in Play at ACM Creativity & Cognition 2019 in San Diego.

Play and creativity are intertwined. Play involves imagination and curiosity wherein players explore potential actions and realities. In collaborative and social play, creative contributions are distributed among players. For example, in tabletop role-playing games, such as Dungeons & Dragons, each player verbalizes actions of their character(s), contributing to the creative generation of a shared narrative. Sawyer and DeZutter identify this phenomenon as distributed creativity, “where individuals within groups contribute ideas often towards a common goal.”

Distributed creativity is not limited to groups in the same physical space. Increasingly popular web-based platforms, such as Twitch and Roll20, connect participants from all over the world in shared play experiences. They offer opportunities to design for and study distributed creativity in digitally mediated and situated contexts. However, we suspect that qualities of these online spaces, their designs, and associated technologies affect distributed creativity. For example, these spaces can promote creative contributions of participants through designs that increase agency or limit involvement through technological constraints. Twitch’s Clips feature provides one such example, enabling participants to creatively curate interesting play moments during a live stream. Clips are automatically shared in the stream’s text chat, allowing participants to contribute to shared play experience.

This workshop will explore different contexts, study methods, game designs, and technologies associated with distributed creativity in play. Invited participants will present their work during a show-and-tell session. They will video prototype new play experiences involving distributed creativity, engage in critical reflections on related topics, and contribute to workshop outcomes.


The primary objectives of this workshop are to:


Topics of interest include but are not limited to:


To participate in this workshop, please send your position paper to Position papers should be PDF document and have a maximum length of 1500 words (excluding title, authors, abstract, and references).

Important Dates

April 25  ̶  June 3 Submit position papers. Submissions will be reviewed as received. Authors will be notified of decisions within 3 working days of submission.
May 7 Early conference registration deadline.
June 23 Full-day workshop, location TBA.